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Keyword: biofuel

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  • Shell, Virent start production at biofuel demonstration plant

    03/24/2010 10:27:55 AM PDT · by thackney · 7 replies · 195+ views
    Oil & Gas Journal ^ | 3/23/10 | Paula Dittrick
    Royal Dutch Shell PLC and Virent Energy Systems Inc. started production at a Madison, Wis., demonstration plant converting plant sugars into gasoline blend components. The 10,000 gal/year-capacity demonstration plant is the latest step in a joint research and development effort by the two companies (OGJ, Dec. 8, 2008, p. 26). Virent’s gasoline blend component will be used for engine testing and fleet testing. Currently, the demonstration plant uses beet sugar as its feedstock although it can be reconfigured to use various feedstocks, executives said. The resulting product can be blended to make conventional gasoline or combined with gasoline containing ethanol....
  • U.S. Drafts Plan to Boost Use of Biofuels

    02/03/2010 2:39:46 PM PST · by PilotDave · 31 replies · 384+ views
    Wall Street Journal ^ | FEBRUARY 3, 2010, | SIOBHAN HUGHES
    The group nodded to concerns that were raised two years ago about the risks that the expanding ethanol industry was pushing up food prices by taking over land used for growing food. The group said that "more intensive, multiple-year management strategies could be used to get greater production from the same amount of land, and thus reduce pressure to expand production onto environmentally sensitive or marginally viable lands."
  • Using biofuel in cars 'may accelerate loss of rainforest'

    01/28/2010 7:07:05 PM PST · by TigerLikesRooster · 14 replies · 471+ views
    The Times(UK) ^ | 01/29/10 | Ben Webster
    Using biofuel in cars 'may accelerate loss of rainforest' Ben Webster, Environment Editor Harvesting of palm oil, the production of which is leading to loss of rainforest Using biofuel in vehicles may be accelerating the destruction of rainforest and resulting in higher greenhouse gas emissions than burning pure petrol and diesel, a watchdog said yesterday. The Renewable Fuels Agency also warned that pump prices could rise in April because of the Government’s policy of requiring fuel companies to add biofuel to petrol and diesel. More than 1.3 million hectares of land — twice the area of Devon — was used...
  • The unintended ripples from the biomass subsidy program

    01/10/2010 3:35:15 PM PST · by neverdem · 13 replies · 1,000+ views
    Washington Post ^ | January 10, 2010 | Juliet Eilperin
    It sounded like a good idea: Provide a little government money to convert wood shavings and plant waste into renewable energy. But as laudable as that goal sounds, it could end up causing more economic damage than good -- driving up the price of raw timber, undermining an industry that has long used sawdust and wood shavings to make affordable cabinetry, and highlighting the many challenges involved in decreasing the nation's dependence on oil by using organic materials to create biofuels. In a matter of months, the Biomass Crop Assistance Program -- a small provision tucked into the 2008 farm...
  • US biofuels policies flawed, study finds

    01/07/2010 12:49:50 PM PST · by thackney · 5 replies · 303+ views
    Oil & Gas Journal ^ | Jan 7, 2010 | Paula Dittrick
    US policymakers need to reconsider the unintended consequences of federal subsidies and tariffs that go to domestic ethanol producers, concluded a study from Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy. A paper on the study results, "Fundamentals of a Sustainable US Biofuels Policy," questions the economic, environmental, and logistical basis for corn-based ethanol. The paper’s authors question whether mandated volumes for biofuels can be met. "We need to set realistic targets for ethanol in the United States instead of just throwing taxpayer money out the window," said Amy Myers Jaffe, one of the paper’s several authors. Jaffe is a fellow...
  • Lawmakers back hiking ethanol-gas blends

    12/17/2009 7:37:36 PM PST · by Graybeard58 · 14 replies · 798+ views
    Peoria Journal-Star ^ | Dec 16, 2009 | Karen McDonald
    PEORIA — A bipartisan coalition of members of Congress questions the Environmental Protection Agency's recent decision to delay increasing the ethanol blend wall in gasoline from 10 percent to 15 percent. U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock, R-Peoria, along with six of his colleagues sent a letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson this week. Their letter said the EPA's decision inhibits their ability to improve the quality of fuels and help the nation realize energy independence. "There has been no evidence to demonstrate that the switch to the E-l5 blend will cause damage to vehicles, regardless of the vintage. Further, changing to...
  • How Badly Has Congress Screwed Up Ethanol? And Who Will Bear the Cost?

    11/28/2009 7:32:12 PM PST · by neverdem · 25 replies · 1,342+ views ^ | November 27, 2009 | Brian Faughnan
    Two years ago the Democrats in Congress and the Bush administration got together to deliver a payoff to farmers: they required refiners to use 15 billion gallons of biofuels by 2012. They did not expect that a crashing recession would lead to a reduction in the amount of gasoline the nation consumes - the first such reduction in years. And they also didn’t expect a White House to push so aggressively for higher-mileage vehicle fleets. As a result of the changed circumstance, it looks like it will be impossible for Americans to use that much ethanol. Something has to give....
  • Bacteria turn carbon dixoide into fuel

    11/15/2009 6:10:01 PM PST · by neverdem · 25 replies · 1,481+ views
    Chemistry World ^ | 15 November 2009 | Lewis Brindley
    US researchers have genetically modified bacteria to eat carbon dioxide and produce isobutyraldehyde - a precursor to several useful chemicals, including isobutanol, which has great potential as a fuel alternative to petrol. The modified bacteria are highly efficient and powered by sunlight, so a future goal is to set up colonies near to industrial plants. This would allow greenhouse gases to be recycled into useful chemical feedstock - supplying several hydrocarbons that are typically obtained from petroleum.  Liao and his team used genetically modified cyanobacteria to produce isobutyraldehyde from carbon dioxide Cyanobacteria and microalgae that consume CO2 have been identified for...
  • A Lesson in Biofuels from Tennessee

    11/11/2009 11:07:04 PM PST · by neverdem · 32 replies · 1,422+ views
    American Thinker ^ | November 11, 2009 | Jeffrey Folks
    In 2007, to great fanfare and amid ever-greater expectations, a large-scale demonstration project was initiated to turn switchgrass into biofuel. For an investment of $70 million, the taxpayers of the state of Tennessee were promised a lucrative new industry that would benefit farmers and create thousands of other "green jobs." The project, which was expected to produce five million gallons of biofuel from switchgrass within two years, would soon be fiscally self-sustaining and afford a "significant return" on investment. As the largest switchgrass demonstration project in the country, it was to have been the foundation for a whole new industry....
  • Bio-Fuels.... will the mandate come back?

    11/06/2009 7:47:00 AM PST · by Sorry screen name in use · 8 replies · 479+ views
    Mark Gardner's Blog ^ | 11/6/2009 | Mark Gardner
    It was January 28th 2009 a mire 8 days after Obama was inaugurated. With a stroke of the pen he landed a commanding blow to the bio-fuel companies of America. What a surprise!! Everyone thought Obama was going to be a green president;
  • Food will never be so cheap again

    10/25/2009 7:10:51 PM PDT · by bruinbirdman · 45 replies · 2,395+ views
    The Telegraph ^ | 10/25/2009 | Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
    Biofuel refineries in the US have set fresh records for grain use every month since May. Almost a third of the US corn harvest will be diverted into ethanol for motors this year, or 12pc of the global crop. The world's grain stocks have dropped from four to 2.6 months cover since 2000, despite two bumper harvests in North America. China's inventories are at a 30-year low. Asian rice stocks are near danger level. Yet farm commodities have largely missed out on Bernanke's reflation rally in metals, oil, and everything else. Dylan Grice from Société Générale sees "bargain basement" prices....
  • Biofuel Production Increases Greenhouse Gases In Atmosphere

    10/24/2009 2:27:40 PM PDT · by Sub-Driver · 11 replies · 474+ views
    Biofuel Production Increases Greenhouse Gases In Atmosphere By Noel Sheppard Created 2009-10-24 17:09 For several years, Nobel Laureate Al Gore and his media sycophants have been telling the nation that a movement away from fossil fuels to biofuels is necessary to save the planet from the Left's bogeyman known as global warming. A new study by the Marine Biological Laboratory raises series questions about this premise. According to MBL's Thursday press release [1], "Carbon emissions caused by the displacement of food crops and pastures may be twice as much as those from lands devoted to biofuels production." Beyond this, "increased...
  • DOD orders Jet Bio fuel

    10/02/2009 7:11:27 AM PDT · by larry hagedon · 67 replies · 2,063+ views
    Biofuels Digest ^ | October 02, 2009 | Jim Lane
    Sustainable Oils, Solazyme, Cargill to supply 600,000 gallons of jet biofuel to US military In Washington, the US Air Force has ordered a total of 400,000 gallons of renewable biofuels from Sustainable Oils, Cargill and Solazyme for testing as a military aviation fuel. the companies, in turn, will use UOP’s processing technology to convert oil from camelina, algae and animal fats into renewable jet fuel. According to UOP, fuel will be delivered in 2009 and 2010 to support flight certification and testing efforts. Combined with a 190,000 gallon US Navy order recently placed for algal fuels, using feedstock provided by...
  • Biofuels Not So Friendly to Gulf of Mexico

    09/25/2009 3:39:27 PM PDT · by neverdem · 14 replies · 1,157+ views
    ScienceNOW Daily News ^ | 21 September 2009 | Robert F. Service
    Enlarge ImageGrowing problem. Increasing reliance on biofuels is expected to further deplete dissolved oxygen in the Gulf of Mexico. Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio The push to ramp up biofuel production may reduce oil imports, but it's likely to come at a high environmental cost: It will boost the size of the Gulf of Mexico's dead zone, a huge swath so depleted of oxygen that almost nothing can live there, according to a new analysis. The gulf's dead zone is already a major environmental problem. First spotted in 1971, it now spans 14,600 square kilometers, or...
  • Genetically modified rutabagas seen as new source of biofuel

    08/19/2009 12:41:27 PM PDT · by theruleshavechanged · 29 replies · 1,083+ views
    Washington Examiner ^ | 08-9-2009 | David Runk
    Even if rutabagas aren't widely grown in the U.S. for people to eat, rutabagas for biofuel could edge out other food crops. "If you were to dedicate hundreds of thousands of acres to produce rutabaga for the biofuel sector, in all likelihood farmers would be changing what crops are currently being cultivated on those lands," Faber said. That could make it a "game changer" in the biofuel industry, he said.

    08/19/2009 6:15:35 AM PDT · by decimon · 25 replies · 989+ views
    Ohio State University ^ | August 19, 2009 | Pam Frost Gorder
    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Engineers at Ohio State University have found a way to double the production of the biofuel butanol, which might someday replace gasoline in automobiles. The process improves on the conventional method for brewing butanol in a bacterial fermentation tank. Normally, bacteria could only produce a certain amount of butanol -- perhaps 15 grams of the chemical for every liter of water in the tank -- before the tank would become too toxic for the bacteria to survive, explained Shang-Tian Yang, professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at Ohio State. Yang and his colleagues developed a mutant strain...
  • Biota’s new flu drug ‘as effective as 10 doses of tamiflu’

    08/15/2009 7:57:22 PM PDT · by neverdem · 7 replies · 701+ views
    The Commercial Chemist ^ | 14 Aug 2009 | Matt Wilkinson
    Australian pharmaceutical firm, Biota, has said that Phase III trials of its new influenza drug laninamivir (CS-8958) have shown that a single inhaled dose of the drug was as effective as 10 doses of Roche’s Tamiflu administered orally over a 5 day period. The drug is a second generation neuraminidase inhibitor and is based on zanamivir, the active ingredient in Relenza, which Biota sold to GlaxoSmithKline. The study was conducted by Japanese pharma firm Daiichi Sankyo, which co-owns the drug, and included 1000 patients that had confirmed, naturally acquired influenza A or B. Preclinical studies have shown laninamivir to be...
  • EERC Awarded Subcontract to Help Produce 100% Jet Fuel from Algae

    07/28/2009 7:21:41 AM PDT · by Reeses · 28 replies · 435+ views
    Renewable Energy ^ | July 28, 2009 |
    The Energy & Environmental Research Center (EERC) at the University of North Dakota has been awarded a subcontract by Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) to help produce jet fuel from algae. The effort is being funded by the U.S. Department of Defense's (DoD) Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and is a continuation of the first successful production of 100% renewable fuel for the U.S. military by the EERC. Under a previous DARPA contract, the EERC advanced the development of a feedstock-flexible process that can utilize various crop oil feedstocks to produce combinations of renewable jet fuel, diesel and naphtha...
  • Houston Company Makes Gasoline out of Lawn Waste (We may have a true winner here)

    07/15/2009 7:14:27 AM PDT · by Freeport · 43 replies · 2,062+ views
    DailyTech ^ | July 14, 2009 10:56 AM | Jason Mick
    Biofuels are a controversial topic. Some support switching to using natural gas (primarily methane), a substance that is in great abundance in America. Others, particularly corn farmers and the U.S. Department of Agriculture suggest switching to an ethanol-based economy. Still others advocate using sugar cane in more limited ethanol or biodiesel deployments. All of these approaches, though, share fundamental inefficiencies -- they require a car engine redesign to full take advantage of them. Modern dual mode vehicles can lose 15 percent or more efficiency. Houston, Texas-based Terrabon believes they have the answer. They have refined and improved on a Texas...
  • Switchgrass Benefits are Greatly Underestimated (Biofuels)

    05/23/2009 9:19:32 PM PDT · by cogitator · 11 replies · 1,451+ views
    Biofuel Daily ^ | May 22, 2009 | Staff Writers
    Energy crop company Ceres has announced that switchgrass can produce substantially more biomass than previously reported and that average yields often used by academics and policymakers to forecast bioenergy economics and environmental benefits may, in fact, be far too conservative. The company reported that yield results from its nation-wide network of field trials showed that average biomass yields among switchgrass seed varieties tested last season were as much as 50% more than the government's projected yields for 2022. Proprietary varieties sold under the company's Blade Energy Crops brand were consistently the highest yielding varieties across multiple trial locations, with average...
  • GreenFuel Runs Out of Fuel, Shuts Down; Algae-to-Biofuel Technology for Sale

    05/21/2009 8:27:35 PM PDT · by Vince Ferrer · 15 replies · 710+ views
    xconomy ^ | 5/13/2009 | Wade Roush
    [Updated 7:30 p.m., 5/13/09, with input from former GreenFuel interim CEO Bob Metcalfe, see below.] Cambridge, MA-based GreenFuel Technologies, which struggled for eight years to commercialize an industrial-scale process for growing algae that could be turned into biofuels or food, is closing down for lack of financing and selling off its technologies. Greentech Media broke the story earlier today. Duncan McIntyre, an associate at Waltham, MA-based Polaris Venture Partners, which participated in several venture rounds that raised more than $70 million for GreenFuel, told Greentech that the company could not raise the funds needed to build planned test facilities in...
  • Bioelectricity better than biofuels for transport

    05/07/2009 11:52:33 PM PDT · by neverdem · 2 replies · 726+ views
    Nature News ^ | 7 May 2009 | Jeff Tollefson
    Crops give more kilometres per hectare if used to power electric vehicles.Electric cars powered by biomass could be greener than cars that run on biofuel.Punchstock / Cultura Vehicles propelled by biomass-fired electricity would travel farther on a given crop and produce fewer greenhouse-gas emissions than vehicles powered by ethanol, researchers report today.Burning biomass to produce electricity is generally more efficient than converting it into ethanol. And electric vehicles — although often more expensive to make and maintain than many vehicles with internal combustion engines — are also more efficient at converting that energy into motion.In the current study, the researchers,...
  • Scientists unveil chocolate-fueled race car

    05/05/2009 9:02:05 AM PDT · by NormsRevenge · 23 replies · 823+ views
    AP on Yahoo ^ | 5/5/09 | Meera Selva - ap
    LONDON – Scientists unveiled on Tuesday what they hope will be one of the world's fastest biofuel vehicles, powered by waste from chocolate factories and made partly from plant fibers. Its makers hope the racer will go 145 mph and give manufacturers ideas about how to build more ecologically friendly vehicles. The car runs on vegetable oils and chocolate waste that has been turned into biofuel. The steering wheel is made out of plant-based fibers derived from carrots and other root vegetables, and the seat is built of flax fibre and soybean oil foam. The body is also made of...
  • Biofuel imports - a costly trade in bunkum

    04/18/2009 8:13:04 AM PDT · by TigerLikesRooster · 3 replies · 319+ views
    The Times(UK) ^ | 04/18/09 | Carl Mortished
    Biofuel imports - a costly trade in bunkum Carl Mortished: On the money Forget electric cars, you won't be driving one for decades, perhaps you never will. What matters is the liquid that fills the tank in the Mondeo and that liquid is becoming more peculiar every year. You may think that your car's diesel engine is burning brown sludge pumped out of a North Sea well and processed in a stinking jungle of pipes and pots on some blighted estuary in the North of England. That is only part of the story: what goes into your tank may be...
  • A Strategy For Winning completely In Afghanistan in 3 years.

    04/17/2009 3:41:39 PM PDT · by ckilmer · 4 replies · 226+ views
    A pretty good strategy for winning the Afghan war would be to drop in some ,biodiesal refineries that can produce diesel for "$1.25 to $1.75 per gallon from a variety of feedstocks that ranges from restaurant and ethanol-plant waste oils to non-edible crops and plain old pond scum." Drop those in the poppy valleys, kill the poppy plants and offer to pay the farmers for their dead poppy plants to use as feedstock for the biodiesal refineries. That diesal could be used for ground based vehicles. Interestingly, if you read this article, you'll note that the airline industry is far...
  • Get rid of ethanol subsidies, (Minnesota)state's auditor says

    04/17/2009 9:17:14 AM PDT · by MplsSteve · 45 replies · 1,061+ views
    Minneapolis StarTribune (aka The Red Star) ^ | 4/17/09 | Bob Von Sternberg - Staff Reporter
    Minnesota should get out of the business of subsidizing the state's ethanol industry, the Legislative Auditor's office said today. In a report on the sometimes-controversial program that pays producers of corn-based ethanol, the office found that the subsidy program fails to maximize the energy and environmental benefits of the fuel. The money, $93 million paid to producers over the past five years, could be better spent on other programs that do a better job of reaching those goals, it concluded. Plus, at a time of crushing state budget deficits, the $44 million expected to be spent on the program through...
  • Water shortage clouding U.S. biofuel future

    04/14/2009 2:11:40 PM PDT · by thackney · 25 replies · 730+ views
    The Calgary Herald ^ | Apr 14, 09 | Carey Gillam
    It's corn planting time in the U.S. Plains, and that means Kansas corn farmer Merl "Buck" Rexford is worrying about the weather — and hoping there is enough water. Rexford plans to start seeding his 7,000 acres near Meade, Kansas, this week and he is relishing a recent heavy snow storm that dropped several inches of much-needed moisture. Like corn farmers throughout the United States, Rexford hopes to grow a healthy crop yielding more than 150 bushels an acre this year. Much of his crop will wind up at a nearby ethanol plant. And that puts the 65-year-old Rexford at...
  • The biofuel illusion

    04/09/2009 2:29:46 PM PDT · by WOBBLY BOB · 6 replies · 479+ views
    Pioneer Press ^ | 4-9-09 | C. Ford Runge
    One might imagine that the old adage about something too good to be true would have sunk in by now. But in the realm of biofuels, hope springs eternal. With more than $240 million in Department of Energy funding, six pilot projects using "cellulosic materials" to produce biofuels are under way. Despite the prospect of technical breakthroughs, none have produced biofuels on commercial terms. This is especially unsettling given the federal order to blend 36 billion gallons of biofuels by 2022, of which 21 billion are mandated to be cellulose-based. Advocates of making these fuels from anything and everything abound:...
  • Shell goes cold on wind, solar, hydrogen energy

    03/19/2009 4:21:43 PM PDT · by neverdem · 18 replies · 1,047+ views
    Reuters ^ | Mar 17, 2009 | Tom Bergin
    LONDON (Reuters) - Oil Major Royal Dutch Shell Plc doesn't plan to make any more large investments in wind and solar energy in the future and does not expect hydrogen to play an important role in energy supply for some time. "We do not expect material amounts of investment in those areas going forward," Linda Cook, head of Shell's gas and power unit told reporters at a press conference on Tuesday. "They continue to struggle to compete with the other investment opportunities we have in our portfolio," Cook said of solar and wind. Shell's future involvement in renewables will be...
  • Bio-Fools

    03/03/2009 2:02:38 PM PST · by neverdem · 7 replies · 872+ views
    American Spectator ^ | 3.2.09 | Max Schulz
    President Obama drew rave reviews for his unorthodox selection of Dr. Sanjay Gupta as the nation's surgeon general. Not only is Dr. Gupta an accomplished neurosurgeon, but as CNN's in-house doc he has also proven himself a bona fide celebrity. People magazine tagged him as one of 2003's "Sexiest Men Alive," and the swooning that met Obama's announcement suggests... --snip-- TAKING THE IDEA mainstream has brought its share of problems, though. The Los Angeles Times profiled a mechanic last year who has converted his fleet of vehicles to be fueled by fryer grease from a local chowder house. Then Sacramento...
  • Drink, Then Drive With Sierra Nevada's Brew-Based Biofuel

    02/05/2009 11:14:24 AM PST · by JoeProBono · 23 replies · 659+ views
    California brewer Sierra Nevada has teamed up with microrefiner E-Fuel to turn wasted yeast into enough high-grade ethanol to power their delivery trucks and a few hundred other vehicles. As if there weren't enough excuses for drinking the craft brewer's Pale Ale and ESB, we can now add "saving American beer delivery trucks from dependence on foreign oil" to the list.
  • Bitter cold stops biodiesel buses closing schools in Bloomington

    01/16/2009 6:05:20 AM PST · by Terriergal · 73 replies · 1,438+ views
    Kare11 ^ | 1-16-09 | AP/Kare11
    BLOOMINGTON, Minn. -- The Bloomington School District is closing schools Friday, after extremely cold temperatures caused the biodiesel fuel in school buses to clog. The problem left dozens of students stranded Thursday -- some for up to 30 minutes in the dangerous cold. Superintendent Les Fujitake said the district could not ensure the buses would not encounter the same issues Friday mornning as temperatures remain below zero in the Twin Cities and therefore they decided to close schools in Bloomington. Elements in biodiesel fuel turn into a gel-like substance at temperatures below 10 degrees. District spokesman Rick Kaufman said some...
  • Bacteria to oil , one step closer .

    01/14/2009 9:27:17 PM PST · by buckrodgers · 8 replies · 920+ views
    watertown daily times ^ | OCTOBER 16, 2008 | Sarah Rivette
    FORT DRUM — Energy independence is one step closer for the military, Fort Drum and, according to some, the north country.
  • Biofuel-powered Continental jet takes wing from IAH

    01/07/2009 8:20:01 PM PST · by trumandogz · 20 replies · 485+ views
    Houston Chronicle ^ | 1.7.09 | BILL HENSEL JR.
    A Continental Airlines Boeing 737-800 took off shortly after noon today from Bush Intercontinental Airport and made history as the first U.S. commercial jet to fly on a mix of conventional jet fuel and biofuel. After taking a wide swing over the Gulf of Mexico toward southwestern Louisiana, it touched back down at Intercontinental at 1:45 p.m. Officials said the plane burned 3,600 pounds of a 50-50 jet fuel-biofuel mix in one engine and 3,700 pounds of traditional fuel in the other, meaning the test batch was more efficient. "The airplane performed perfectly. There were no problems. It was textbook,"...
  • Engineering algae to make fuel instead of sugar

    12/26/2008 11:31:10 PM PST · by neverdem · 34 replies · 1,184+ views ^ | December 17, 2008 | NA
    In pursuing cleaner energy there is such a thing as being too green. Unicellular microalgae, for instance, can be considered too green. In a paper in a special energy issue of Optics Express, the Optical Society's (OSA) open-access journal, scientists at the University of California, Berkeley describe a method for using microalgae for making biofuel. The researchers explain a way to genetically modify the tiny organisms, so as to minimize the number of chlorophyll molecules needed to harvest light without compromising the photosynthesis process in the cells. With this modification, instead of making more sugar molecules, the microalgae could be...
  • Are biofuels still economically feasible?

    12/18/2008 1:29:38 AM PST · by ari-freedom · 27 replies · 777+ views ^ | December 17, 2008 | Susan Wilson
    Several months ago when gas was over $4.00 a gallon and lines were long at gas stations across the country, biofuels were heralded as the next best thing to sliced bread. Now the price of gas has fallen below $2.00 a gallon in many places and is flowing freely again. What does this mean for the biofuels industry? The New York Times reported that major oil projects have been placed on hold because of the large drop in oil prices over the past several months. Oil exploration and new refineries have been postponed because these projects are no longer cost...
  • Brazil defends biofuels expansion, says not impacting food prices

    11/21/2008 7:58:44 AM PST · by thackney · 3 replies · 245+ views
    Platts ^ | 21 Nov 2008 | Platts Refiner
    The rapid expansion of biofuels production in Brazil, the world's largest ethanol exporter, does not contribute to global food price inflation, the country's energy minister said Friday, rebutting a common critique of Brazil's ethanol and biodiesel programs. Minister Edison Lobao told the Biofuels 2008 conference Friday that Brazil has enough free arable land to remain the world's largest grain exporter even as it rapidly expands its output of sugarcane ethanol and biodiesel, some of which is made from soybeans. "We cannot accept the accusation that somehow Brazil's biofuels are contributing to food price inflation," Lobao told energy and environmental officials...
  • If a Tree Falls in the Forest, Are Biofuels To Blame? ... [Biofuels increase global warming?]

    11/11/2008 11:09:53 AM PST · by Fractal Trader · 6 replies · 193+ views
    Wall Street Journal ^ | 11 November 2008
    Biofuels are under siege from critics who say they crowd out food production. Now these fuels made from grass and grain, long touted as green, are being criticized as bad for the planet. At issue is whether oil alternatives -- such as ethanol distilled from corn and fuels made from inedible stuff like switch grass -- actually make global warming worse through their indirect impact on land use around the world. For example, if farmers in Brazil burn and clear more rainforest to grow food because farmers in the U.S. are using their land to grow grain for fuel, that...
  • Starving and penniless, Ethiopian farmers rue biofuel choice (the consequences of best intentions)

    11/05/2008 9:18:37 AM PST · by presidio9 · 6 replies · 806+ views
    AFP ^ | Wed Nov 5, 2008 | Aaron Maasho Wed Nov 5
    With a slight reeling in his gait, Ashenafi Chote ventures into his small plot of land and shakes his head, his eyes full of regret: "I made a mistake". For the last 10 years, his plot in southern Ethiopia had kept his family of four alive by supplying enough food to eat and even surplus to sell, in a region often ravaged by drought and food shortages. But since swapping from a subsistence to a biofuel crop several months ago, his once treasured source of income has dried up and, worse still, he and his family are now dependent on...
  • Fungus manufactures diesel

    11/04/2008 10:47:47 AM PST · by Prunetacos · 36 replies · 1,506+ views
    A tree-living fungus that manufactures diesel fuel has been discovered in South America. Experts believe the organism, Gliocladium roseum, could potentially be a completely new source of green energy. The fungus, which lives inside the Ulmo tree in the Patagonian rainforest, naturally produces hydrocarbon fuel similar to the diesel used in cars and trucks. Scientists were amazed to find that it was able to convert plant cellulose directly into the biofuel, dubbed "myco-diesel". Crops normally have to converted to sugar and fermented before they can be turned into useful fuel...."
  • There is no Zero Energy Future

    10/30/2008 4:48:37 AM PDT · by decimon · 10 replies · 493+ views
    Next Big Future ^ | Oct. 29, 2008 | Brian Wang
    The zero energy future does not exist. This kind of future is often seriously discussed at peak oil sites, where they say that after say one hundred years there will be no more oil and civilization will revert to a pre-oil status. Biofuels are already here and can be scaled up. There is already over 1 million barrel per day of oil equivalent in ethanol and biodiesel. The world uses 86-88 million barrels per day of oil or oil equivalent liquids in 2008. [42 gallons in a barrel. 365 days. 15330 gallons/year is one barrel per day.] The projection shown...
  • Diesel initiative on ropes {biodiesel tax credits}

    09/26/2008 5:39:42 AM PDT · by thackney · 8 replies · 525+ views
    Houston Chronicle ^ | Sept. 25, 2008, 10:28PM | DAVID IVANOVICH
    An energy tax package Congress is cooking up this week may fry ConocoPhillips' production of diesel fuel from Tyson Foods' leftover animal fat. Houston-based ConocoPhillips and Springdale, Ark.-based Tyson, the world's largest chicken, beef and pork processor, teamed up last year to use the oil company's existing refineries to produce renewable diesel fuel from animal fat. Tyson sends beef tallow from its rendering plant in Amarillo to ConocoPhillips' refinery in nearby Borger, where it is used as a feedstock to make diesel fuel. This year the partners have produced 4 million gallons of diesel fuel with this method. Eventually, the...
  • Biofueled Food Shortages?

    09/15/2008 10:42:34 AM PDT · by bs9021 · 4 replies · 271+ views
    Campus Report ^ | September 15, 2008 | Irene Warren
    Biofueled Food Shortages? by: Irene Warren, September 15, 2008 America’s renewable energy plan remains bleak, as biofuel was found to give off more Greenhouse Gas Emissions than renewable energy, explained a panel of experts yesterday at the Hudson Institute. Although experts disagreed on the next course to take in keeping Americans fed, they, for the most part agree that biofuel drives up cost and can even cause a universal food shortage in the long run. In light of the Global Warming, “the World Bank is warning of climate chaos and demands a rebuilding of the world’s agricultural science centers to...
  • Europe Lowers Goals for Biofuel Use

    09/12/2008 7:28:05 AM PDT · by reaganaut1 · 3 replies · 125+ views
    New York Times ^ | September 11, 2008 | James Kanter
    PARIS — European legislators said Thursday that government goals for using biofuels should be pared back, prompting the fledgling industry to fire back with a campaign warning that alternatives may be no cleaner. European governments pledged last year to increase the use of biofuels to 10 percent of all transport fuel by 2020, amid expectations that energy derived from crops would provide a low-carbon alternative. On Thursday, the European Parliament’s influential Industry Committee endorsed the general 10 percent target — but added a number of modifications meant to move away from traditional biofuels made from grains or other crops toward...
  • From fibre to fuel in a flash - Chemists convert cellulose to potential biofuel without enzymes.

    09/11/2008 7:11:20 PM PDT · by neverdem · 23 replies · 344+ views
    Nature News ^ | 11 September 2008 | Philip Ball
    Switchgrass could be an excellent source of biofuels - if only it were easier to break down its cellulose.US Govt A genuine revolution in biofuels is currently hindered by the difficulty of converting the most recalcitrant parts of plants, primarily the cellulose of their fibres, into useful fuel. Two chemists in California now claim that it might be remarkably easy to do just that with little more than a strong acid to break down the cellulose. Mark Mascal and Edward Nikitin of the University of California, Davis say their new process is the most efficient way yet described for...
  • European Union pulls back on biofuels target

    09/11/2008 7:26:43 AM PDT · by thackney · 4 replies · 115+ views
    AP via Houston Chronicle ^ | Sept. 11, 2008 | Associated Press
    EU lawmakers have voted to scale back ambitious biofuels targets, cutting the goal for use of crop-based fuel by half to 5 percent of road transport needs by 2020. The vote by the European Parliament's industry committee deals a blow to a climate change package agreed to by EU governments meant to meet international promises to cut carbon dioxide emissions.
  • Africa Becoming a Biofuel Battleground

    09/06/2008 2:26:47 PM PDT · by TigerLikesRooster · 11 replies · 177+ views
    Der Spiegel ^ | 09/05/08 | Horand Knaup
    Africa Becoming a Biofuel Battleground By Horand Knaup Western companies are pushing to acquire vast stretches of African land to meet the world's biofuel needs. Local farmers and governments are being showered with promises. But is this just another form of economic colonialism? Everything will turn out alright. Correction: everything is going to get better. There will be new roads, a new school, a pharmacy, even a proper water supply. Most of all, there will be jobs -- 5,000, at the very least. "If there are jobs for us, then it's a good thing," says Juma Njagu, 26, who hopes...
  • Texas A&M Technologies:Direct Production of Hydrocarbon Fuels from Biomass; 95 Octane Biogasoline!

    08/20/2008 6:02:22 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 20 replies · 442+ views ^ | 08-20-2008 | Staff
    Overview of the Byogy process. Start-up Byogy Renewables has licensed processes for the direct conversion of biomass to hydrocarbon fuels such as high-octane gasoline or jet fuel from the Texas A&M University System. Byogy is planning to have plants up and running within 18 months to two years. Byogy’s initial plans are to produce only gasoline—a 95 octane fuel with an energy content of 130,000 Btu/gallon—according to Benjamin Brant, Byogy’s President and Chief Operating Officer. Conventional retail gasoline is about 125,000 Btu/gallon. Brant said that Byogy may involve strategic partners in the near future that will help support the...
  • Algae May Be an Energy Answer

    08/09/2008 6:52:41 AM PDT · by LomanBill · 102 replies · 172+ views
    The New American ^ | August 18, 2008 | Ed Hiserodt
    A modern society such as that in the United States requires personal transportation — cargo trucks, planes, and cars — to make a market economy work. Any serious effort to move our country to mass transportation, such as trains and buses, for everyone and everything all the time — or even most of the time — would destroy not only our economy, but the American way of life. To provide our personal transportation for the foreseeable future, the United States needs oil or an oil substitute.Electric vehicles, the proposed solution by many for America’s transportation problems, have serious drawbacks generally...
  • EPA denies Texas' waiver request

    08/07/2008 9:29:58 PM PDT · by smokingfrog · 25 replies · 140+ views
    Oil and Gas Journal ^ | August 7, 2008 | OGJ Editors
    HOUSTON, Aug. 7 -- The US Environmental Protection Agency has denied a request submitted by Texas Gov. Rick Perry for a 50% waiver from the federal renewable fuel standard (RFS) mandate for corn-based ethanol. The RFS, part of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, requires increased national production of renewable biofuels to 36 billion gal/year by 2022 from 9 billion gal/year in 2008. Perry blamed increased demand for corn-based ethanol for contributing to escalating corn prices, which he said contributes to higher food prices and also higher costs for livestock feed (OGJ Online, July 22, 2008). EPA said...